Fashionistas, rejoice! Project Runway is back, premiering its 10th season on July 19. While All Stars was fun (and Mondo finally got his due), it will be nice to welcome Heidi Klum, Michael Kors, Nina Garcia and Tim Gunn back to the runway. And to celebrate its season 10 milestone, the show has started its new season with a bang – last Friday, the 16 new designers faced their first elimination challenge in a live outdoor runway show in New York’s Time Square.

In addition to a sea of fans, tourists and media packed into the iconic Manhattan locale, the season 10 contestants had to impress regular judges Heidi, Michael and Nina, joined by guest judges actress Lauren Graham (of Parenthood) and costume designer Patricia Field (known for her work on Sex and the City). Field’s presence was also significant as she was the very first guest judge on Project Runway‘s series premiere. There were 32 looks that walked the runway, two for each of the 16 finalists (one they had time to design and execute before arriving in the Big Apple; the second assigned under a Project Runway time crunch, to complement the first look).

Klum, dressed in a sleeveless emerald satin dress, told Zap2it she had been dreaming of staging a fashion show in Times Square for years. “I am very, very excited,” she beamed. Host Tim Gunn agreed, calling Time Square “the fashion capital of the world.” Though the audience was not treated to the judging portion of the runway, fans liked a hot pink ethereal gown, as well as a polished summer look with a floral pencil skirt. Field, however, said the designs were “interesting” with some hesitation (according to EW), indicating the designers may have had some failures in their first challenge. We’ll have to wait until the season 10 premiere (July 19 at 9pm on Lifetime) to see how the judges really felt.

(Image courtesy of WENN)